Why Aluminum Foil is Dull on One Side

April 6, 2011 at 2:00 am 7 comments

By Kaye Nemec

Hopefully you’ve all read Chad’s previous posts about aluminum foil retainers or how to properly use aluminum foil in the microwave. The post about aluminum foil retainers is a life changer.

I learned something else recently that adds to the growing list of things you never knew you needed to know about aluminum foil.

There are two, distinct sides to standard aluminum foil – the shiny side and the dull side. During the last phase of the rolling process, two sheets of foil are put through the rollers. The rollers themselves are oiled and, therefore, the side of the foil that touches the roller comes out shinier than the other. There are rumors that one side of the foil reflects heat better than the other and that the reflection should be considered during cooking. However, the Reynolds Wrap website states, “Actually, it makes no difference which side of the aluminum foil you use—both sides do the same fine job of cooking, freezing and storing food.”

P.S. If you place a piece of aluminum foil underneath your ironing board cover the heat will reflect off of it which means you are ironing both sides of your garment at once!

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Sources: Reynolds Wrap, The Straight Dope, Life Hackery

Photo: Emillian Robert Vicol (cc)

Entry filed under: Around The House. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

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7 Comments Add your own

  • […] Why Aluminum Foil is Dull on One Side (brokensecrets.com) […]

  • 2. dtk7wb  |  December 14, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    actually the lubricant is sprayed between the two layers of foil… if there wasn’t any lubrication between the layers as the foil became thinner and stretched the two layers would weld to each other

    • 3. dtk7wb  |  December 14, 2011 at 12:33 pm

      and the side that the lubricant is sprayed is the dull side

  • 4. sea won above  |  June 13, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    aluminum foil is metal and should spark in a microwave. Are they made different now?

  • 6. sea won above  |  June 13, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    Any bit of metal I forget to take off of food packaging always sparked when I put it in a microwave on accident. It does reflect microwaves but causes sparks when it hits. I never tried a store bought aluminum foil from a roll but I have tried aluminum. I tried to defrost (low level microwaves) a can of pepsi I froze. It was a quick reaction to being mad I had frozen it in the first place. I hit stop a second later once it hit me what I had done and it had already started sparking. I popped food in that had a foil peel top and started it and then remembered the foil and hit stop but it had started sparking as I stopped it too.

  • […] let’s answer the question of why tinfoil has two sides. According to brokensecrets.com “During the last phase of the rolling process, two sheets of foil are put through the […]


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